44 entries will contest next weekend’s M-Sport Return to Rally Stages, the first rally to take place in the UK since the coronavirus pandemic halted the sport back in March.
The rally is set to feature 45 cars all built by the Cumbrian team and is designed to showcase the company’s 20-year history as a rally car builder with the headline entry being arguably Matthew Wilson in a current-generation Ford Fiesta WRC.
Matthew, son of M-Sport owner Malcolm, will enter the event alongside a strong list of other competitors including WRC2 regulars Adrien Fourmaux and Rhys Yates for the behind-closed-doors event.
Other noticeable names include, Josh Moffett, Stephen Petch, Charles Payne, Thomas Preston, Michael O´Brien, Martin Cairns and John Stone who all compete in different variations of the company’s flagship Fiesta WRC.
Apart from the trio of Frank Bird, Bruce McCombie and Richard Ceen in Focus WRCs, the rest of the entry are driving the Fiesta model. A total of 15 cars are seen through the R2, R2T and Rally4 classes, which include the team’s WRC Principal manager Richard Millener.
Malcolm himself is also set to appear on the stages next weekend, behind the wheel of a Ford Escort MK2 course car.
“We’ve got some great entries for the M-Sport Return to Rally Stages and I’m looking forward to catching up with as many of the competitors as I can.” Malcolm said ahead of the event.
“Seeing all of the cars on the list is really quite humbling – knowing that each and every one was designed and developed by our people here at Dovenby as well as our base in Krakow.”
“Over the past 20 years we’ve worked hard to ensure there is a competitive Ford at all levels of competition, and that’s something we continuously strive to achieve. I think it will be quite emotional seeing all these cars lined up in the service park – each representing what we’ve achieved over the past two decades.” Malcolm continued.
He added about the recent struggles that the company has faced as a result of the COVID-19 crisis: “Of course it’s no secret that we’re going through a particularly tough time at the moment, but seeing all these cars and remembering how we have bounced back from tough times in the past makes me all the more determined to come out the other side and continue to deliver for Cumbria and for rallying.“
“I have to say that I’m also looking forward to getting back behind the wheel myself, even if not competitively, and to what I’m sure will be some close-fought competition throughout all the classes.“
“All that remains is to say good luck to all of the competitors. I look forward to seeing you all soon, and will keep my fingers crossed for some Cumbrian sunshine!”
The M-Sport Return to Rally Stages take place next Saturday, August 22, with a review programme from the event set to appear on the M-Sport social media channels in the following days afterwards.
The 2020 M-Sport Return to Rally Stages entry list:
|1||Matthew Wilson||TBA||Ford||Fiesta WRC||1600||1|
|2||Ardien Fourmaux||Renaud Jamoul||Ford||Fiesta R5||1600||2|
|3||Rhys Yates||TBA||Ford||Fiesta MK 2||1600||2|
|4||Josh Moffett||Andy Hayes||Ford||Fiesta WRC||1600||1||Combilift|
|5||Sam Moffett||James Fulton||Ford||Fiesta R5||2000||2|
|6||Joseph McGonigle||Ciaran Geaney||Ford||Fiesta R5 Mk 2||1643||2||Maxol|
|7||Cathan McCourt||Barry Mc Nulty||Ford||Fiesta R5 Mk 2||1600||2|
|8||Stephen Petch||Michael Wilkinson||Ford||Fiesta WRC||1600||1||SG Petch 4X4, SGP Motorsport, Pirelli|
|9||Rory Young||Allan Cathers||Ford||Fiesta R5||1600||2||Scottish Christmas Trees|
|10||Hugh Hunter||Calvin Cooledge||Ford||Fiesta R5||1600||2|
|11||Frank Bird||Jack Morton||Ford||Focus WRC07||1997||1||Frank Bird Poultry, VisionTrack, Yuasa Batteries, Fuchs Titan Oils,|
|12||Charles Payne||Patrick Walsh||Ford||Fiesta WRC||1600||1|
|13||Tom Williams||Jamie Edwards||Ford||Fiesta R5||1600||2||Genesis|
|14||Conor Mc Court||Caolan Mc Kenna||Ford||Fiesta R5 Mk 2||1600||2|
|15||Thomas Preston||Carl Williamson||Ford||Fiesta WRC||1600||1||Hippo Motor Group/ Sterling Automotive Design Ltd|
|16||Alan Carmichael||Ivor lamont||Ford||Fiesta R5||1600||2||Hireco NI|
|17||Bruce McCombie||Michael Coutts||Ford||Focus WRC01||1998||1||McCombie Builders Ltd , MAC Plumbing Ltd|
|18||Michael O’Brien||James O’Brien||Ford||Fiesta WRC||1600||1||M O’Brien Group|
|19||Kenny Mckinstry||Kenny Hull||Ford||Fiesta R5||1600||2||Mckinstry Motorsport – Rally Hire|
|20||Martin Cairns||Peter Ward||Ford||Fiesta WRC||1600||1|
|21||Robert Adamson||Jane Nicol||Ford||Fiesta R5||1600||2|
|22||John Rintoul||Ross Hynd||Ford||Fiesta R5||1600||2||FCE Group of Leven, DC Motorsports|
|23||Gareth Sayers||Liam McIntyre||Ford||Fiesta R5||1600||2|
|24||Hugh Brunton||Ian Parker||Ford||Fiesta R5||1600||2||DC Motorsport|
|25||Jason Mitchell||Kenny Bustard||Ford||Fiesta||1600||2||Greg Mitchell Motors|
|26||Richard Ceen||Aled Edwards||Ford||Focus WRC05||1995||1||MSL Motorsport Rally4Wales|
|27||Trevor Gamble||Ronnie Roughead||Ford||Fiesta R5||1600||2||Ford Parts|
|28||Ernest Lee||Patricia Lee||Ford||Fiesta R5||1600||2||Haddo Energy Ltd|
|29||John Stone||Alex Stone||Ford||Fiesta WRC||1600||1||Legend Fires|
|30||Finlay Retson||Rhys Stoneman||Ford||Fiesta R2T 19||1000||3||Vending JSR / DJR Services/ Plas Y Rhosyn/Pirelli/Watermans Solicitors/ Castrol|
|31||Elliot Payne||Michael Gilbey||Ford||Fiesta R2T 19||998||3|
|32||Eddie Lewis||Dom Adams||Ford||Fiesta Rally4||998||3||Mechanical Solutions LTD|
|33||Ewan Tindall||Andrew Roughead||Ford||Fiesta R2||1600||4||2300 Club John Easson Award|
|34||Rob Wilson||Martin Haggett||Ford||Fiesta R2||1596||4||Ravenol, ASNU, Spal, RPro|
|35||Andy Turner||Steve Davey||Ford||Fiesta R2||1600||4|
|36||Fraser Anderson||Sinclair Young||Ford||Fiesta R2||1596||4||Baxter & Gillespie Ltd; Artex; Akzo Nobel|
|37||Jonathan Jones||Steven Brown||Ford||Fiesta R2||1600||4||Ingospec Aluminium Ltd|
|38||Richard Millener||Kirsten Dallas||Ford||Fiesta R2||1600||4|
|39||Callum Hughes||Ryan Griffiths||Ford||Fiesta||2000||4||Pickstocks, Ztech Motorsport|
|40||Jonny Sproat||Peter Johnson||Ford||Fiesta ST||2000||4||Eden Valley Tyres And Autoservices|
|41||Steven Featherstone||Dan Robinson||Ford||Fiesta ST||2000||4||Team Coordin8 Discount Ferries|
|42||Johnnie Mackay||Emily Easton-Page||Ford||Fiesta ST||1999||4||ISS (Aberdeen) Ltd|
|43||Jeremy Packer||Chris Gilbert||Ford||Fiesta R2||996||3||EDSL Sport|
|44||Tony Simpson||Ian Bevan||Ford||Fiesta R2||1600||4||SEACON UK , MRF Tyres, Service & Sport, ARNE CLO, Home 2 Office|